Most flexible iPad editing/markup app for text documents w/ Pencil support

Hi, I’m looking for an iPad app that is very good at marking up living text documents with Apple Pencil. (Word/Pages/RTF/etc., not PDF.) The idea is that the user can just sit there with a large document, or stack of documents, and the Pencil, and do a seamless mix of text editing and annotation, but not much or any writing.

Ideally, this app would do these things:

  • Good general Pencil markup/annotation support
  • Move and stretch the markup with the text (like Pages)
  • Do that with multiple kinds of markup (pen, pencil, highlighting, etc.)
  • Use Pencil to create comments
  • Have a mode that allows text manipulation with Pencil (selecting, dragging, incising, etc.)
  • Either uses or exports a common doc format
  • Have Apple Files and iCloud support

Some apps ruled out:

  • Pages (highlighting only in smart annotation mode)
  • Word (only moves annotations to match line inserts)
  • Ulysses (uses Pencil well, but only for text editing (I think))
  • Common PKM apps (though could be missing an option)
  • PDF editors (need to annotate living text documents)
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I’m interested in this, too, but I think we’ll find that we’re limited to PDFs rather than docs with actual editable text.

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Liquid Text? Only used it for PDFs, but it says you can import other file types.

Gosh, I think the “live text” request eliminates most contenders. For really heavy proofs I use GoodNotes, but it converts files I import to pdf.

For regular heavy (umm, 50 odd pages, mostly words?) I use DevonThink To Go, which captures pencil and typed comments, allows highlighting etc. But again that’s as PDF. DT can handle other file types, but DTTG (the mobile device app) can’t edit them in their native app.

GDrive is fine for light editing, but I’m not keen on the iPad experience. If it’s only you using the file and it’s a Google Doc, you could try it out and see what you think, but if you’re collaborating with others it’s not great. And honestly if you’re doing any dense text, I’d choose paper over Google :joy:

I resent even suggesting this as an option (boo Adobe pricing), but I suppose the Adobe suite would do all you want, if you have an employer who will pay for it!

You can open other file types in LT, but it converts the to PDF right away (very smoothly, I might add. Such a great app.)

@Pupsino What is the Adobe app/workflow you’re thinking of? Access to CC might actually be available. Google Docs’ pencil support is rough/entirely accidental, sadly—either Pages or Word would better.

I’ve not used it for years so if someone else has an account maybe they can help, but I think the Adobe Acrobat app will let you do almost all you want on iPad, if you have a full subscription. I’m not sure about extending margins to make room for mark-ups, which I think you also wanted.